How Do I Know If My Dog Is Cold At Night?

How Do I Know If My Dog Is Cold At Night? Easily Noticeable Signs

Some nights prove to be much colder than usual. These nights will make us reach for an extra blanket just because the central thermostat alone couldn’t keep us warm.

But when we are reaching for this extra layer of comfort, did you ever think of knowing whether your dog is cold at night; we’ve got you covered. Keep reading and find out how!

So, How do I know if my dog is cold at night? A cold dog will stand out like a sore thumb. Shivering, making themselves small, whimpering, barking, trying to stay off the ground, etc., are some obvious symptoms of a cold dog. 

It is imperative that you take the necessary steps to bring the pet’s body temperature to the right level. When dogs start to feel the chill, they are in the danger zone of being hyperthermic.

And that is why the number of casualties having severe hyperthermia increases during the cold season. This condition even has the power to stop your dog’s heart.

So keeping your beloved dog around where you can oversee him will be an excellent place to start.  

Will Dogs Get Cold At Night?

Yes, of course! Your furry friend – if not of a breed adapted to colder climates, will get chilly during cold nights. Many people misjudge that dogs are entirely safe from freezing due to their fur coats. It is correct, but only up to a certain point. 

The furry coat they wear every day will keep them safe, but to what extent depends on the type of fur they have. If your dog has thick fur, like a Siberian husky or an Alaskan malamute, you have nothing to worry about. These dogs are adapted to thrive in cold weather up to -20⁰ Fahrenheit. 

Dogs breeds like Shiba Inus can withstand cold up to 20⁰ Fahrenheit, while German Shepherds stop at 40⁰. When the temperature goes down below their preferable conditions, they will start to get frostbite and hyperthermia.

And short-haired dogs like Dalmatians, Basenji, and Fox Terriers will be even more vulnerable when the temperature starts to drop. 

Other than the fur type, age, health level, and size are some of the other factors that spell out the dog’s sensitivity level to fluctuating temperatures. 

Are you wondering, “how to know if my dog is cold at night?” Then having a good understanding of your pet’s breed will let you know the answer. 

How Do I Know If My Dog Is Cold At Night? Symptoms Explained

The most obvious symptom of all is shivering. Just like how we shiver when it is too cold, our pets will shiver when the temperature goes down.

Sometimes, this may not be visible to our naked eye. But once you touch his body to pet him, you will feel him quivering. 

Next, a dog’s body usually tends to be warm, especially its mouth, inner paws, and ears. But if you feel that these areas are starting to get cold, that is another sign that your canine kid is also starting to get a little chilly.

Next, when they are feeling cold, many dogs don’t like lying down or even walking on the floor. They will try to get out of the cold ground like the floor is lava.

You will see them getting on to your couch, bed, beanbag, etc., and refuse to get down. When you see them doing this, you better start taking precautions to keep the doggo warm. 

Another thing to note in a cold fur friend is that they will curl into a ball to keep them warm and save their body temperature. Once the cold season starts, you will see this all the time. Therefore, giving your pet a more comfortable and cozy bed will keep them contended. 

Additionally, he will lose all interest in playing or going for a run. It will catch you off guard since many dogs get very excited whenever you pick up the ball or his leash. The cold season affects our faithful pets and will make them lazy. 

During the cold winter days, the perfect temperature for a dog to sleep is around 68°F to 72°F. And it is highly recommended that you keep a steady temperature inside the house during both hot and cold months.

This way, the dog will adapt to this temperature and will feel at ease when he’s inside.

How Do I Make Sure My Dog Is Warm Enough At Night?

Many of us will sleep soundly during winter nights and not wake up to the small whimpering noises our pets make. Therefore, it is wise to align everything for the pet before you go to bed. 

One thing you can do is buy your puppy a heated pet bed. It is one of the special beddings you can use to keep your dog warm on colder nights.

Some of them come with a built-in timer. This way, you can set up a specific number of hours for the bed to turn off automatically. 

And if the nights tend to get colder, you can also have a small portable heater. You can turn it on and keep it on a low heat level – at an unreachable place for the pet. This way, if the night gets much chillier than usual, the dog will have the heater to keep him warm. 

Setting the pet’s bed in a cozy corner also works wonderfully in keeping the doggo warm. Prepare the pet’s bed with some comfy blankets and place it somewhere away from windows or water. Your boy will sleep soundly throughout the night. 

And there is one more special thing you can do if you question yourself, “how do I know if my dog is cold at night?” You can get your furry friend a raised dog bed.

We all know that the floors will get cold as the night approaches. Therefore, if you can raise the pet’s bed slightly off the cold floor, you will not need to worry.

Thank you for reading this post. Stay tuned with Jack Russell Owner for more interesting posts about your four legged friend. Cheers!!


  • Dominic Parker

    Dominic P. is a dog behavioral researcher who graduated from the University of Surrey and holds BVMsi (Hons) in Veterinary Medicine and Science. He has been around dogs since childhood and has unconditional love for dogs. It makes him become a researcher instead of practicing as a veterinarian. Dominic enjoys his work and likes to share his findings with dog parents to give them a better understanding of dogs’ behaviors.

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